tainted as they are


Senior Member
Chinese - China
Those involved in the poster movement (of advocating for democracy) are as critical of the CPC as activists from Hong Kong, Xinjiang and Taiwan. But some of them worry about being accused of supporting those other campaigns (than simply pursuing democracy), tainted as they are by separatism in the eyes of many mainland Chinese.

The way "as" is used here is normally interpreted as "Though......", therefore it is "though they are tainted by.......".

But "though" doesn't seem to make sense in this sentence. Instead, "because they are tainted by...." makes more sense.

So is it a mistake to use "as" like that in the given sentence?

  • "Tainted as they are" there expresses a reason rather than a contrast to me.
    Yeah that's exactly what I thought. That's why I was wondering if the writer wasn't supposed to write it like that. Shouldn't he have simply written "because/as they are tainted by....."?